by Kathie Felix, News Editor
News of the latest Net-related products and technology
for K-12 may be sent directly to Kathie Felix at 5746
Union Mill Rd., PMB 605, Clifton, VA 20124 or to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Cyber Security for the Digital District
The Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) has launched a new program designed
to provide education technology leaders and policy makers with strategies and
tools to ensure the privacy of data and the safe operation of technology within
school systems. The multi-year vendor-neutral program titled "Cyber Security
for the Digital Distric," will provide a range of information. A white paper, "Cyber
Security: Helping Schools Protect Their Technology Assets and Fulfill Their
Educational Mission," is available on the project's Web site, http://www.securedistrict.org/.
Future resources will include a toolkit to assist educators in understanding
the issues around network security, explain the problem to other stakeholders,
assess their own situation, and begin to reduce their risk; ongoing professional
development with face-to-face "train the trainer" workshops; a Web tool to
enable educators to self-assess their understanding of cyber security issues
and compare their district's situation with other responders; a Webcast on
cyber security for CoSN members and federal, state, and local policy makers;
an asynchronous online course; and a compilation of case studies. The project
is supported by education grants from SonicWALL, SurfControl, Symantec, Sun
Microsystems, and Microsoft. CoSN, 202/861-2676 or http://www.cosn.org/.
ProQuest has released eLibrary Curriculum Edition, a curriculum and
reference service that provides one of the largest collections of periodical
and digital media content designed specifically for secondary schools and libraries.
The service provides more than 2,000 full-text magazines, newspapers, reference
books, and transcripts, as well as thousands of pictures, maps, Web links,
and audio/video files. The service includes ProQuest Learning, a comprehensive
integrated literary resource for more than 150,000 original full-text works
and more than 1,300 author biographies; the History Study Center, with more
than 25,000 primary and secondary historical sources covering ancient to modern
U.S. and world history; eLibrary general reference, with more than 1,600 full-text
periodicals and more than 230 newspapers and newswires; and the ability to
search these resources collectively or individually. Free trials are available. ProQuest,
800/521-0600 or http://www.il.proquest.com/.
Online Reader provides an interdisciplinary database of articles and images
from leading magazines and includes Lexiled reading material suitable for early
readers through grade 12. The database complements existing reading programs
and offers 4,000 selected articles for reading comprehension practice. Also
included are tests with articles; thematic, comprehensive, standards-based
teacher guides to build expository skills; automatic grading/feedback for tests;
a grade book that allows teachers to assign materials according to individual
student needs, create student/group profiles, and track progress; and a progress
report that allows students to view reading assignments, tests, and their own
reading achievements. EBSCO, 800/653-2726 or http://www.ebsco.com/.
Performance Series Updated
A Norm Reporting module has been added to Scantron's Performance Series assessment
tool, allowing educators to compare student test results from Performance Series
with results from students across the country. A standards-based online assessment,
Performance Series delivers a unique test to each student based on her or his
ability level. The resulting diagnostic data can be used to create individualized
learning plans and evaluate how well the curriculum supports each student's
ability to meet current learning standards. The series contains modules for
mathematics, science, reading, and language arts. The new norm reference capability
gives educators an additional benchmark for measuring student progress prior
to the administration of high-stakes tests. Scantron, 800/722-6876 or http://www.scantron.com/.
Online SOL Tutorial
The Princeton Review has developed an online tutoring program for the Virginia
Department of Education to help high school students pass the state's English:
Reading and Research Standards of Learning (SOL) assessment, which is required
for high school graduation. The customized online tutorial enables students
to take tests aligned to Virginia's academic standards, receive feedback, and
access resources for remediation. Initially, 800 seniors throughout the state
who have yet to pass the reading test will have free access to the tutorial
through the Princeton Review's Homeroom.com Web site. Upon successful completion
of the pilot, the online tutorial
may be expanded statewide. Princeton Review, 212/874-0775 or http://www.PrincetonReview.com/.
The Human Rights 101 Web site [http://www.thirteen.org/edonline/hr101/] offers students insight into topics such as tolerance, racism, women's rights,
refugees, and religious freedom and helps show students how they can become
effective catalysts for change. The site serves as a launching pad for project
ideas and helps students focus their interests and actively work for change.
Students will find resources, volunteer and internship opportunities, and an
interactive profile feature. The Human Rights 101 toolkit for teachers includes
model projects, a list of PBS programs that address human rights issues, and
complementary teaching resources. Thirteen/WNET, http://www.thirteen.org/.
EarthLink, the Internet service provider (ISP), has launched Generation Link,
a nationwide, community-based initiative that helps high school students teach
senior citizens how to use the Internet. The ISP has partnered with the American
Association of Retired Persons (AARP) to identify senior citizen centers or
residential facilities where members or residents are interested in learning
how to use the Internet. These locations are partnered with local high schools
for a 6-week program during which the students teach the seniors the basics
of logging on, using the mouse, using e-mail, researching issues of concernfrom
prescription drug coverage to baseball scoresand more. EarthLink,
404/748-7436 or http://www.earthlink.com/.